IMPA launches its most ambitious sustainability programme ever

There is a reason we at IMPA have long touted collaboration as the panacea for all corporate ills; we believe that where there is unity, there is leverage, and where there is leverage, there is strength. And while it is true that we have been navigating unchartered territories for the past few months, we have not taken our eyes off the challenges that are ever so present in our industry, such as the need for decarbonisation across the board, and the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) towards which we simply cannot afford to stop working. It is why we have kept our heads down and worked hard to find a way to push the sustainability agenda before we are the ones being pushed. And we really hope to have delivered a good start to the solution.

We are therefore immensely proud to announce our newly-formed IMPA Council for Supply Chain Sustainability, a strong group of global shipowners and maritime suppliers representing companies with a combined fleet of more than 1000 vessels and a massive collective purchasing power, who are, more importantly, keen to be among the first responders to the call for a more sustainable blue economy. With representatives from Maersk Procurement, Teekay Shipping, Wilhelmsen Ship Management, Francois Marine, Oceanic Catering and Weco Shipping, the group is chaired by IMPA Special Ambassador Mikael Karlsson and fully prepared to work towards securing the future of our industry by securing the future of our ocean through the new IMPA SAVE initiative programme.

A sustainable future is a must, and this does not have to be actioned by rule of law; it can happen by any individual or organisation, so we establish our IMPA SAVE team to bridge sustainable solutions to our industry. (Mikael Karlsson, Head of Sales, Francois Marine, Chair of SAVE and IMPA Special Ambassador for Sustainability)


IMPA SAVE aims to support the call to action for the SDGs and be the vehicle through which the Sustainability Council and industry colleagues work with the industry’s best and brightest and bring knowledge of existing sustainable solutions to the marine and offshore industry, and set goals that can be achieved to support the UN 2030 agenda. By bringing companies together under IMPA SAVE, we aim to create an opportunity not only to share knowledge on better more sustainable practices and alternatives through regular webinars, but also to motivate each other to be better stewards of our oceans through committing and regular impact reporting. SAVE’s mantra is simple and essential to guarding the people, our planet, profit and our higher purpose: save costs to save the environment.

Milestone One – Getting to Zero – Reducing the Use of Plastic Water Drinking Bottles from the World’s Fleet By 2025

Every year, the world’s fleet has close to 1 billion litres of drinking water delivered onboard, generating 40 tons of waste bottles. With global recycling facilities not on par with produced waste and waste disposal often carried out incorrectly (with bottles, lids and plastic rings sometimes reaching our ocean and being lethal to marine life), our industry needs to address this issue now. This has been unanimously agreed as the first SAVE milestone, part of the “Getting to Zero” goals.

The solution can be quite simple and, assuming that vessels already have functioning Reverse Osmosis systems or Evaporators onboard, there really only needs to be an investment in a filtration system that makes the water drinkable. With an actual ROI within less than a year and a sizeable sustainability ROI, there is really no excuse.

On 7 July 2020, as part of the IMPA SAVE initiative, IMPA will run a webinar explaining some of the options available from a selection of companies and we will continue to offer information and further details about how you can purchase and deliver sustainable alternative solutions.

We are asking shipowners and ship managers to sign the IMPA SAVE pledge as a commitment to the reduction of plastic water bottles from all vessels. While this is not a legal commitment, it is your expression of intention to work towards this within your company through the sourcing and procurement of suitable sustainable alternatives.

There really has been no better time to move from passive awareness to active awareness and we need to understand that, at the end of it all, it is no longer a case of environment vs economy; environment is economy now. And while it is true that we have been facing an unprecedented health crisis, we cannot assume that the climate challenges and the need to decarbonise our industry are not becoming more serious as time goes by. As part of the IMO’s commitment towards SDG 14, the Marine Environment Protection Committee has already initiated a plan to reduce marine plastic litter from ships. Let us not delay and make sure that we are the ones who push forward rather than try to catch up.

Learn more at

Sign the pledge at